Charlton Athletic deliver anti-discrimination course to matchday staff
Charlton Athletic have become the first football club to deliver a course which offers a qualification in Dealing with Incidents of Discrimination at Spectator Events.
Following a successful pilot course at Wembley Stadium in April, Centre Circle Event Management Ltd, in conjunction with Charlton Athletic, delivered the first course at club level, taking place at The Valley on Monday.
The directors of Total Hospitality Training Luke Shotter and Andrew Bracken, along with Quality Assurance Consultant Lorraine Wilkins identified a need for a qualification aimed at stewards and event staff to give them the tools and confidence to be able to deal effectively with issues of discrimination at spectator events, including racism, disability, homophobia, religious hatred and sexism to name but a few.
Utilising their combined operational, training and quality assurance experience gained within the events’ environment they developed the Award in Dealing with Incidents of Discrimination at Spectator Events (DIDSE) to support event personnel in dealing with these issues.
Further to the feedback received from senior event safety professionals and research conducted, it was concluded that no uniform method exists to tackle these types of issues. Based on this, DIDSE was created as a qualification that was flexible enough to synchronise with specific organisational policy.
DIDSE was then approved and endorsed by the Awarding Organisation, Highfield Awarding Body for Compliance as a Level 2 equivalent.
“We believe a steward or member of event staff that is trained in how to recognise, respond and report potential incidents of discrimination will have a direct benefit to an organisation, their image, in working to reduce discrimination within tremendously influential settings like sporting or music events seems paramount,” explained Shotter.
“The qualification will allow both future and current stewards to gain a stronger understanding of how to recognise, respond and report these issues effectively and in a uniformed method.”
Safety Officer John Little added: “Most people would recognise that this subject needs to be dealt with properly.
“Football has come a long way over the years and the whole subject of discrimination has been opened up, but there is still work to be done.
“It’s not just about race. Under the law there is nine protected characteristics and we cover all of those.
“We want to make Charlton a safe place and a welcoming environment for everyone to come to.”
From Charlton Athletic